I love being a dad. I have four children. Three stinky boys and a beautiful little girl. I even made a little book about it, “The Princess & the Four Ogres.”

Since I’ve become a father I’ve come to see differently, or at least to be more deeply affected by, the passages of the Bible that present God as father. I know how I view my children. I’d literally die for them. There is nothing they will ever do that will make me reject them. I will love them forever.

God’s love for his children, since he has revealed himself as father, must be at least as good as that. But I know, by Scripture and by experience, that it is even better.

I’ve said to students before that God revealing himself as father is either the worst sort of hoax, the kind of monstrous thing a cruel person might do, using imagery that evokes a certain kind of emotion when it is indeed not the case, or God revealing himself as father is the greatest reality in all of the universe.

God as father is either false or it is the sweetest and most powerful and inviting imagery of all of Scripture. If he is indeed your father, he will never leave you nor forsake you. He is like the best earthly father you could ever imagine, only infinitely better. If he isn’t your father, if you’ve never experienced his love, you should consider his offer of adoption through Christ.

The far off country you’re in right now will only get worse. You and I both know it wasn’t that great to begin with. Come home. The father is waiting. As you turn the bend and set on your way up the long stretch leading to his house, you will find him running towards you with arms wide open. He will give you the spirit to cry out, Abba, Father.